Advertisement
  1. Hernando

New Christian elementary school set to open in Spring Hill

From left:  Ricardo Aristizabal and Cynthia Romero visit a second-grade classroom with their daughter, Eldalie Aristizabal, during a campus tour at the new Life Primary School in Spring Hill.  Autumn Nicole Imagery
From left: Ricardo Aristizabal and Cynthia Romero visit a second-grade classroom with their daughter, Eldalie Aristizabal, during a campus tour at the new Life Primary School in Spring Hill. Autumn Nicole Imagery
Published Jul. 22, 2019

SPRING HILL — Seven-year-old Eldalie Aristizabal was enjoying herself so much at last week's open house at Life Primary School, she wanted to stick around for a while.

"Ellie was in the classroom, and she didn't want to leave," said her mother, Cynthia Romero, who describes her daughter as a social butterfly. "I had to tell her the [staff] people needed to go home."

Life Primary School is a new ministry of Great Life Church that will educate students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Romero, who has been home-schooling Ellie and her younger sibling, is excited about her daughter starting second grade at the school next month.

"They're going to be teaching so many awesome things, like how to do a budget, nutrition, sewing and fashion design, and graphic artistry and piano," Romero said. "She's going to learn from some really amazing, talented people."

She also likes the teacher one-on-one time that will be available to her daughter, because the class sizes will be small.

"I also really like that they value our input, and something that I was really excited about is their little-to-zero homework policy," Romero said. "It's awesome for the parents that there is no stress in that. And as a parent, you want to be able to spend time with them when they get home."

Starting a school has been a long-time goal of church pastors Steve and Ellen Bilsborough, said principal Frank Zayas. Victoria Bilsborough is the administrator.

Zayas has taught for 28 years, including at Parrot Middle School, Moton Elementary and Hernando Christian Academy. He chose the Abeka curriculum for the school, which offers classes in phonics, math, history, social studies, geography, science and health, the Bible, language arts and English.

"The Abeka curriculum provides a strong foundation for students to develop excellent reading and writing skills, and engaging lessons that are faith-based," according to the school's website at lifeprimaryschool.com.

"With Abeka, you can count on high academics AND a Biblical world-view so your students aren't left half-prepared to make a difference in the world," says a quote on the website.

Electives will include language, speech, art, physical education and music.

Tuition ranges from $2,900 to $4,100, depending on the grade, plus an application fee, a technology fee and fees for before- and after-school care. Other expenses include books and uniform. Scholarships are available.

The school is on 6 ½ acres, allowing room to expand the five-classroom building. It is surrounded by fencing and will have surveillance cameras.

"I have five people from the Sheriff's Department who will stop in regularly and do a walk around," Zayas said.

Plans include adding a grade each year, and Zayas is interviewing teachers, with plans to hire one per grade level.

About 200 parents and prospective students from Hernando, Citrus and Pasco counties attended the open house, he said.

"We have between 90 to 100 pre-enrolled students," Zayas said. "We have to do interviews with them, where we will let them know about our mission and answer their questions. Then if they feel, and we feel, like this is going to be a good fit, we ask if they want to enroll, and they pay the tuition."

For Romero, who attends Great Life Church with her husband and children, there is no question that the school is a good fit.

"As soon as they started talking about their goals, I was sold," she said.

Zayas hopes to make Life Primary the "best school in Hernando County," he said. "I want every single kid, when he or she goes home to say, 'Mom, I just can't wait to go there tomorrow.' "

For more information or to apply, visit lifeprimaryschool.com. For questions, email fzayas@lifeprimaryschool.com or call (352) 488-8850. The school, at 6001 Deltona Blvd., Spring Hill, will open Aug. 26.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. A for sale sign is seen in front of a home in the Westchase area of Tampa. CHRIS URSO  |  Times (2013)
    And a spike in cash sales suggests investors were active in the market.
  2. A look at the construction on the Tierra Verde bridge project which is the bridge between Isla Del Sol and Tierra Verde islands on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020 in St. Petersburg. The project began in December 2018 and is scheduled to be completed in summer of 2021. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    Dr. Delay takes a deep dive into the construction process for the $56.3 million State Road 679 and Bayway Bridge project .
  3. A proposed bill in the Legislature would set a statewide referendum on whether to amend Florida's constitution to add a year to the period when home buyers can transfer their accumulated benefits under the Save Our Homes cap on property assessments to a new home. Pinellas County Property Appraiser Mike Twitty says going from two years to three would reduce the possibility that construction delays in a booming real estate market would prevent some buyers from meeting the deadline, costing them potentially thousands 
 of dollars in property tax savings. [SUSAN TAYLOR MARTIN | Times (2019)]
    The bill, the idea of Pinellas County Property Appraiser Mike Twitty, would give buyers another year to transfer their tax savings under Florida’s Save Our Homes assessment cap to a home they’ve...
  4. Child and family advocate Jack Levine. [CHRIS URSO  |  Times]
    The founder of 4Generations Institute discusses his commitment to children and families.
  5. More than 44 percent of people who searched on ApartmentList.com for the Tampa Bay area from June to December were outside the region, according to a report from Apartment List. Percentages in the “Top Three Sources” box represent the share of searches coming from outside the metro area. (Apartment List map) [Apartment List]
    The region trails only Denver, Baltimore and San Diego for the percentage of people from outside the area searching for apartments on Apartment List.
  6. Hernando County's deputy fire chief has been chosen as the new fire chief in Groveland. [Hernando County]
    Hernando’s assistant fire chief gets kudos from Hernando County Commission.
  7. ALICE HERDEN | Special to the Times
The Brooksville Blueberry Festival has attracted many visitors from outside the community. [ALICE HERDEN | SPECIAL TO THE TI  |  Alice Herden]
    Commissioners approve $22,630 in funds for community activities.
  8. Members of the  Brooksville Buffalo Soldiers brought up the rear of the parade along Howell Avenue Monday morning at annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade in downtown Brooksville. Pictured in front is Trooper Richard Wilder (holding flag) and his grandson Trevon Douglas. In back is First Sergeant H.L. Williams and his grandson, Trevion Patterson. [PHYLLIS DAY  |  Times]
  9. Jaclyn Campbell, 23, left, braves the cold temperatures while walking with her colleague Tysjah Pitchford during their lunch break in downtown Tampa in December. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    Temperatures Tuesday reached the 30s for the first time since 2018. Wednesday will start there, too.
  10. Michael Maine is the Hernando County School District senior recruiter. [Hernando County School District]
    The district has on average 39 teacher openings.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement